There is one thing for certain when it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT) for this coming year: the numbers of online products and consumer goods will be increasing. It seems they could be increasing exponentially from here on out. According to Gartner Inc.’s forecasts, 5.5 million new “things” will get connected every day in 2016, with a total of 6.4 billion connected things in use worldwide during 2016. This is a 30 per cent increase from 2015. Gartner’s prediction also says that the number of connected devices and products will reach 20.8 billion by 2020.
Internet of Things Categories
The Internet of Things crosses through different categories, not just tech devices and computers. There are a number of areas, including consumer devices, merchandising, and IoT services that will all see growth because of the expansion of IoT technologies and reach. We will see an increase in all areas related to IoT, but one of the areas to focus on is IoT services, which can be the real driver of value in IoT. Consider the following two tables from Gartner with statistics on the Internet of Things categories.
Table 1: Internet of Things Units Installed Base by Category (Millions of Units)
Source: Gartner (November 2015)
Table 2: Internet of Things Endpoint Spending by Category (Billions of Dollars)
Source: Gartner (November 2015)
The Internet of Things Ecosystem
Business Insider explains how The Internet of Things will have such an impact on products and the way we do business that it is the next Industrial Revolution. “It will change the way all businesses, governments, and consumers interact with the physical world.” The components of the IoT ecosystem include devices, analytics, networks, and security. Business Insider has composed a report on the Internet of Things with an analysis and predictions for growth. According to this analysis, IoT numbers will be much larger than those initially forecasted by Gartner. Here are five key points from the report:
- In total, Business Insider projects there will be 34 billion devices connected to the internet by 2020, up from 10 billion in 2015. IoT devices will account for 24 billion, while traditional computing devices (e.g. smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, etc.) will comprise 10 billion.
- Nearly $6 trillion will be spent on IoT solutions over the next five years.
- Businesses will be the top adopter of IoT solutions. They see three ways the IoT can improve their bottom line by 1) lowering operating costs; 2) increasing productivity; and 3) expanding to new markets or developing new product offerings.
- Governments are focused on increasing productivity, decreasing costs, and improving their citizens’ quality of life. We believe they will be the second-largest adopters of IoT ecosystems.
- Consumers will lag behind businesses and governments in IoT adoption. Still, they will purchase a massive number of devices and invest a significant amount of money in IoT ecosystems.
Internet of Things Trends to Watch
As the Internet of Things expands and grows, as always, there are trends to watch. Consumers might be slower to adopt IoT devices than businesses, but as more consumer products hit the market and innovate the way we live, IoT consumer goods will become more and more prevalent. At present, wearables make up a big part of the IoT consumer goods market. The area of fitness is a big consumer goods area that will continue to see growth and adoption. Smart home technology is one of the areas that will also see the most growth in the IoT market. MediaPost details that 70% of consumers who bought their first smart home product are more likely to buy another one. Smart home technology products include security options, temperature controls, lighting, and safety. In addition to wearables and smart home technology, other IoT consumer products to look for in 2016 include:
- Bowflex — Smart dumbbells with technology designed to guide users through each exercise while tracking reps and weight lifted
- Edyn – A smart irrigation controller for plants
- Keyssa – Smart glasses for cyclists
- Whirlpool — Smart French Door Refrigerator uses space more efficiently so families can fit and find it all
- Livall – A smart bike and helmet
- Beddit – A sleep tracker that makes any bed a smart bed
- Master Lock — Bluetooth Smart Padlocks, turns a smart device into a key
- Moff — The Moff Band, a smart wearable for kids
- Osram Sylvania — Smart connected LIGHTIFY portfolio, including the LIGHTIFY Switch and Outdoor Flex RGBW strips
- ZoZbot — Consumer robot made for Robo-Gaming
- Nortek Security & Control — GoControl water control and monitoring devices including a smart flood detector
- Schlage – The Schlage Control Smart Locks and the Sense Smart deadbolt
- Lumo Bodytech — Lumo Run smart shorts
- NXT-ID – The Wocket Smart Wallet
- Telepathy — AR smart-glasses
- Zuli — A smart plug that enables a home to adapt to personal preferences, such as lighting and temperature
- Oco — Smart camera for monitoring a home with a self-learning motion and noise detection system
- McGraw-Hill Education — A tablet-optimized version of SmartBook, an adaptive reading product
- Osterhout Design Group — Augmented Reality company to smart glasses
- Petnet – The SmartBowl for pets
- Icontrol Networks – Piper smart home security system
- RIF6 — The Cube, a pocket-sized projector that can turn a smartphone, tablet or laptop display into a 120-inch projection
- Roost — The Roost Smart Battery, which transforms existing home smoke and CO alarms into smart alarms
- Slendertone — The Slendertone Connect Abs, a smart device that actively tones your abs
- Tablo — Tablo apps for Apple TV and LG webOS-powered Smart TVs
List Source: MediaPost
5 Ways the Internet of Things Will Change the Way We Work
In many ways, the future is here and now. IoT has finally brought science fiction from the screen into reality with technology that we will see implemented in 2016. Many of the new things that consumers will purchase moving forward from cars to appliances will be “smart” or connected in some way. For businesses, IoT can mean big savings, new techniques and tactics, and better offerings for employees. MAR Services outlines the following 5 ways that IoT will change the work place in 2016:
- LED Savings and Security: New LED lighting is now available and is equipped with motion sensor technology. This means that energy resources are only in use when necessary and also means that a big business can keep track of where everyone is. It is an added security benefit that might make it seem like big brother is watching, but in reality the devices bring enhanced security measures in addition to maximising productivity and decreasing waste.
- Health Benefits: Now that wearable fitness devices have been on the market for a few years, there is enough data to support the fact that wearing fitness monitors helps people stay fit and healthy. Employers know that fit and healthy employees miss less work and are more productive, so giving out fitness devices will be a great way to give employees a benefit while also gaining a healthier workforce.
- Never Lose Anything Again: Especially in large offices, important items can be misplaced or lost all the time. RFID (radio frequency identification) can ensure that important folders, documents, drives, and computer devices are never misplaced or lost again.
- Self-Repairing Technology: Smart devices now have the ability to diagnose and fix problems in software and hardware.
- Glasses to Help Find Your Way: For years glasses have been helping us see clearly. Now, technology has improved so that we can actually find things, like RFIDs and even project data onto Google Glasses and the like.